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Saturday, June 09, 2001

Hank Greenberg’s exploits need no Hollywood embellishment - 6/9/01

I still haven’t watched the documentary of Hank Greenberg’s life, “The Life and Times of Hank Greenberg.” I also haven’t seen 61*. I really need something like UltimateTV or Tivo. Either that, or friends with both films taped and two VCRs.

Jim Furtado Posted: June 09, 2001 at 04:25 PM | 1 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   1. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: June 10, 2001 at 12:16 AM (#69180)
Jim, you should see the Greenberg documentary if you get a chance. Very little embellishment or Hollywoodization. In fact, it may be the best straight baseball film ever. 61*, on the other hand, has a few things going for it (the resemblance of the 2 leads to Maris and Mantle, especially Maris), but the bit about the writers getting on Maris is so overplayed that it loses a lot of credibility. And if Maris was ever booed in Yankee Stadium that year, I'd like to know when that was--I just don't believe it. This was a guy who was helping his team in a dogfight with the Tigers, hitting home runs at a record pace, and generally conducting himself in a modest way--who the hell in New York was going to boo that? Maris did get tired of being asked the same dumb questions over and over and over (the "How do you FEEL?" ones may have had their birth that summer), and there were many writers who obviously wanted to see Ruth (or Mantle) hold the record, but most Yankee fans were rooting for either one of them to break it. Maris' real problems with the writers started the next Spring with one particularly nasty column by (I think) Jimmy Cannon, and when he got off to a bad start, one thing led to another, with both the writers and the fans, but this was in 1962 and not 1961. The truth is that over the first 10 years of his career, Mantle was booed far more in Yankee Stadium than any other Yankee I can remember. It was only in 1961 that this stopped for good.

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